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11 Exciting Veggie Sides for Thanksgiving

By Salongo Wendland

Vegetables often get the short end of the stick on Thanksgiving. Our plates end up a sea of beige, a watery spoonful of canned corn tossed on as an afterthought. But you deserve better than that!! This is Thanksgiving, and while you may be reading this only because you have that vegan relative coming to dinner and need to make ONE thing without bacon, you could also be one of the 90% of Americans who don’t get the recommended amount of veggies every day. These recipes are exciting, full of things to make you feel amazing, and many of them can be made ahead. No excuses!! Make your Thanksgiving plate pop with delicious color!

Ultimate Turkey Veggie Platter by Fork&Beans

Fork & Beans Ultimate Turkey Veggie Platter Thanksgiving sides

The veggie tray is one of the lamest Thanksgiving traditions, but this one is fabulous. From drab to fab in less than 15 minutes, it will be the hit of the kids’ table, and you don’t even have to cook anything. (Vegan, Gluten-Free)

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Chickpea Schwarma Dip by Minimalist Baker

Chickpea Schwarma Dip by Minimalist Baker Thanksgiving sides

This one’s another showstopper, and it only takes 30 minutes to make! It’s another good pre-feast snack, if you’ve been tasked to bring that. Crispy, crunchy, smooth, silky, and fresh– this one’s light enough that it won’t ruin your appetite for dinner. Just pack it separately and assemble at the party. (Vegan, Gluten-Free)

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Sweet and Spicy Baked Cauliflower by The Fitchen

Sweet and Spicy Baked Cauliflower by The Fitchen Thanksgiving sides

We all have that one relative who can’t quit with Sriracha. They’ll love the sweet and spicy combination of Sriracha, maple syrup, and soy on this addictive cauliflower. Serve as an appetizer or a side. (Vegan, Gluten-Free)

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Make-Ahead Thanksgiving Panzanella by Oh She Glows

Make-Ahead Thanksgiving Panzanella by Oh She Glows

This one requires 30 minutes of prep the day before, then the bread and squash roast at the Thanksgiving-friendly oven temp of 400F right before dinner. It’s hearty and packed with all the flavors of autumn. (Vegan)

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Make-Ahead Roasted Squash and Kale Salad With Spiced Nuts, Cranberries, and Maple Vinaigrette by Serious Eats

Make-Ahead Roasted Squash and Kale Salad With Spiced Nuts, Cranberries, and Maple Vinaigrette by Serious Eats

A bit more involved than some of the other recipes here, this one can be fully prepared a few days in advance, and actually benefits from a day or two to meld the flavors. Maple syrup, chewy cranberries, and pumpkin pie spices make this at home on any Thanksgiving table. (Vegan, Gluten-Free)

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Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pears and Pistachios  from Food52

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pears and Pistachios by Food 52

I roast brussels sprouts incessantly in the winter. The crispy, caramelized, tender sprouts can be done so many ways– here, roasted pears and crunchy pistachios will keep you coming back for more. (Vegan, Gluten-Free)

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Radicchio And Roasted Delicata Squash Salad by Brooklyn Supper

RADICCHIO AND ROASTED DELICATA SQUASH SALAD by Brooklyn Supper

I made this the other night (without the parm so it was vegan), and there were zero leftovers. ZERO! This is tangy, crunchy, sweet, and light, and it comes together quickly. (Vegetarian, Gluten-Free)

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Carrot Salad with Tahini and Crisped Chickpeas by Smitten Kitchen

Carrot Salad with Tahini and Crisped Chickpeas by Smitten Kitchen

Crunchy, smoky chickpeas take this salad to the next level. Make it the day ahead and assemble before serving. (Vegan, Gluten-Free)

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Cabernet Cranberry and Blueberry Sauce by Averie Cooks

Cabernet Cranberry and Blueberry Sauce by Averie Cooks

Cranberries + blueberries + wine + 30 minutes. If that doesn’t convince you to make this immediately, I don’t know what will. Maybe the fact that Averie starts off with ” Drinking wine and eating jam are two things I’m great at.” Kindred spirits. (Vegan, Gluten-Free)

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Stuffed Butternut Squash With Quinoa Salad by Pickles & Honey

STUFFED BUTTERNUT SQUASH WITH QUINOA SALAD by Pickles & Honey

This is substantial enough to act as an entree, but can be served sliced as a side. Roasted squash, a warm quinoa salad, nutty pecans, and the brightness of parsley and pomegranate check all the fall boxes. (Vegan, Gluten-Free)

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Roasted Balsamic Beets + Rutabaga by Olives for Dinner

Roasted Balsamic Beets + Rutabaga by Olives for Dinner

Sweet, tender root veggies and fragrant thyme combine in this head-turner of a dish. It may take a while to make, but if you’re looking for a zen moment this might be the ticket. (Vegan, Gluten-Free)

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